Nanotech set to tackle WA dust
Nanotechnology could be the solution to dust problems in industrial areas.
Canadian firm NTI Nanotechnology Corp’s CEO Andre Voskuil has met with mining companies, politicians and community members in Port Hedland, and says his company can help.
“I can definitely see that there is a significant dust issue. Walking around the mining sites is perhaps not very fair because obviously there is a lot of dust in those operations,” Mr Voskuil said.
Dust levels in Port Hedland are so high that the West Australian Government has reportedly been advised to ban new housing, aged care facilities and childcare centres in some areas.
Mr Voskuil said the company had secured a handshake deal to run a pilot program to test the effectiveness of his company's dust-cleaning technologies.
The project will see NTI attempt to stabilise the dust by adding a layer of nanoparticles, mainly iron.
But Mr Voskuil said it cost up to $100 million.
“I have to admit that the sheer size of the problem in Port Hedland is in a league of its own,” he said.
“We have tackled with this technology sizeable mining sites and mining roads and mining communities mainly in South America, but never of this magnitude to be quite honest with you.
“I think if we look at the size and quantity [of dust] that I've been told exists in Port Hedland and neighbouring communities, I think we are going to talk in the hundreds of millions of dollars to have an environmentally viable solution.”
Ha said that mining companies should take responsibility for damage to workers, cities, and the natural environment.
“I'm not going to make myself very popular, but I better say it as it is,” he said.
“I don't think it's a political bill to be paid, I think it's a commercial bill to be paid.”